During his trip to several African countries, the German foreign minister has visited one of the DREAM Centers of the Community of Sant'Egidio in Maputo.
The minister wanted to know the aspects of the spread of the HIV virus and the work to combat the disease in Mozambique. Westerwelle met with the medical and paramedical staff of the DREAM program and with some of the patients who work as activists. They are women and men treated in the DREAM centers, that carry out home care to other patients and play an important role in raising awareness and fighting the stigma. Marta, one of the activists, told the minister that her eight year old daughter was born healthy thanks to the program, which also allows mothers to live well and in good physical shape. Even the children of the center greeted the minister and have enthusiastically embraced his gifts.
During the visit, the minister wished to encourage the Community of Sant'Egidio to continue the fight against AIDS in Africa, ensuring the support and the proximity of the German government: "I am impressed-the minister said- about this great and important work. DREAM
combines harmoniously the more technical aspects with a great humanity and attention to every detail. From the biomolecular laboratory to the snacks for the kids … everything here is special! Continue in your work. I tell you with great conviction. Germany will support you". Thanks to government and private support, since 2002 DREAM has built in Mozambique 12 centers for the treatment of AIDS. Support from Germany came from the Ministry of Development Aid as well as from the the Deutsche AIDS Stiftung, whose president was present at the meeting with the minister. 28.000 patients are currently under care in the 12 centers. Thanks to the program, 12.300 children were born healthy.